This week’s book comes from the ‘epic’ John Milton entitled “Paradise Lost”. A fascinating and difficult read with many foreign and outdated words. However as with all old writers you really come to admire their works as they are so brilliant. Milton’s main thesis deals with the Fall of Adam and Eve and the entrance of sin into the world leading to the loss of paradise. Also his point he tries to get across in a poetic, epic way (what Homer’s “Illiad” did in Greek) was strict obedience to God’s word!
Here are some of my favorite quotations:
He has Satan saying,
“…in my choice,
To reign is worth ambition, though in Hell:
Better to reign in Hell than serve in Heaven.”
In search of complete freedom and autonomy, Satan, trying to set himself above God’s anointed Son, ends up being the king in hell, a title he despises because he becomes the biggest loser, as the king in hell is the greatest sinner and furthest away from God.
He has Jesus speaking to His Father as such,
“Mighty Father, thou thy foes
Justly hast in derision, and, secure,
Laughest at their vain designs and tumults vain,
Matter to me of glory, whom their hate
Illustrates, when they see all regal power
Given me to quell their pride, and in event
Know whether I be dextrous to subdue
Thy rebels, or be found the worst in Heaven”
And his eschatological views are,
“Anointed universal King; all power
I give thee; reign for ever, and assume
Thy merits; under thee, as head supreme,
Thrones, Princedoms, Powers, Dominions, I reduce:
All knees to thee shall bow, of them that bide
In Heaven, or Earth, or under Earth in Hell.”
“yet, that debt paid,thou wilt not leave me in the loathsome grave
His prey, nor suffer my unspotted soul
For ever with corruption there to dwell;
But I shall rise victorious, and subdue
My vanquisher, spoiled of his vaunted spoil.
Death his death’s wound shall then receive, and stoop
Inglorious, of his mortal sting disarmed;I through the ample air in triumph high
Shall lead Hell captive maugre Hell, and show
The powers of darkness bound”
Thus we can see that Milton is a postmillennialist, which is always a plus! 🙂
Overall the book was great and a classic read for all student of the English language and some theology. However, don’t expect to get a puritanic doctrinal position, this work is not meant for that venue.
Enjoy this piece, I gave it a 4.5/5!